I’m Baaaaaack

It’s been a while I know.  I probably don’t even have any followers anymore.  So…

Where have I been?

The past couple months I have been really focused on therapy.  I have been seeing Princess Glitter Sparkle 1 hour a week for individual therapy, and 2 hours a week for group DBT (dialectical behavior therapy).  It has been good for me.  First, she is THE BOMB of therapists.  Best one I have ever had.  She is REAL, she is funny, she gets my humor, we laugh together, she’s gotten me to open up about stuff that’s hard.  She’s quirky and washes her hands a lot, so she’s a real person.  So all in all she’s awesome.  And I am so blessed to have found her.

I have also been reading a lot. I have been both reading and listening to audiobooks like crazy.  My goal for the year was 52 books, I have read 33 so far and am currently reading 4 more. Reading helps me escape.  But not just into my own head, but into a story, that for the most part makes me feel good (I try not to read sad things but there was one recently that had me in tears- but good tears).

Did I talk about Fat Camp (medical weight management)?  In case I didn’t- the dr was awesome.  She was nice, and listened to everything I had to say.  She was empathic and just nice- even if she was 15 pounds soaking wet, abut 9 feet tall, and looked like she was from Sweden. I met with the dietician, and while she was great, I just don’t know if I can do what they are asking of me – 1000-1200 calories a day, no carbs, put my body in ketosis and stay there, until goal “weight” which they wouldn’t tell me the ideal because they don’t want me focusing on a number (so why do they want me to weigh in every time???)- but here’s the problem, the hospital has decided after 8 years to cut the program.  So after August 24 I have no support. So….yeah… Have considered a couple other “do-it yourself” programs.  Anyone have long-term success with any? Comment here and let me know. The BEST thing about the program is they have this neat machine that you hook up to and breathe into for 10 minutes and it gives you your basil metobolic rate (basically how many calories you burn at rest) 1796 BTW.

I haven’t been leaving the house much.  Even prior to my surgery (will get to that in a minute).  I admit, I am not leaving the house much.  Only to things I ABSOLUTELY have to do- therapy, appointments for the kiddos etc.

I had surgery a couple weeks ago, the same surgery I had last summer on my left hip but this time on my right hip.  This time recovery hasn’t gone as smoothly.

  1.  During recovery I stopped breathing several times – this has never happened before, so they think I have apnea and I am waiting on a sleep study.  Fun.  It really solidified in my mind how big I am getting and the fact that I really need to do something about it.
  2. I developed DVT (deep vein thrombosis – a blood clot) in my surgical leg just under a week after surgery.  Thankfully hubby and I were paying attention to the signs, got to the dr and got treatment.  I will be on blood thinners for 6 months and I should be fine (though at increased risk for DVT again).  I was lucky the clot was below my knee (felt like a Charlie horse in my calf) because its much rarer for those to break up and go to the brain/lungs/heart.  So thank God for that.

In Other news:

  1. I am still napping a lot- but is it escapism or because Im not sleeping well because of  apnea (I wake up so tired, but I also can’t fall asleep at night) I think I have messed with my internal clock.

2.  In general, I am feeling a bit better about life.  I am not so down, and depressed. I don’t know when it happened, just one day I was like- “huh, doesn’t suck so bad today”.  That’s not to say I am 100% awesome everyday, most days I don’t think that everything sucks.

3.  Anxiety, OCD, and irritability are all in full swing.  But I can’t expect that they will go away anytime soon, and I guess that’s ok.

Mental Health Summary: Not everything sucks.  Still trying to isolate myself.  But things aren’t quite as bad as they were.

Everything else: Day by day.

So there you have it. Until next time (which I hope won’t be as long).

Disruption…

Nothing has changed in 23 years. Back then I was the disruption to my husband’s family. I was the one ruining it. I was told time and time again. At one point fairly early into our relationship, sometime after we were engaged but nowhere near our wedding, I tried to end it. If I was ruining his life I wanted to fix it… In the parking lot of a grocery store, I tried to end things and give him back the ring. I’ve never seen him more sad, and more hurt. He made me promise to never do that again. He assured me I wasn’t ruining their family.

If you looked at highlight reels from 1995 to 2018 you would see all the times I was a disruption, not good enough, not good enough wife, not good enough hostess, not a good enough mother to stop autism, ADHD, anxiety, bipolar in my kids…. the list goes on. But tonight my husband was told “mental illness is a ‘disruption'” specifically my mental illness. And I should be better now.

What? Like it’s that easy? I snap my fingers and I’m cured! But I don’t, so I must like being like this. Like not wanting to ever leave the house, like sleeping all day, like being stuck in OCD loops and feeling out of control. I must like being so sick of germs I’m afraid to hug my kids, or let them sit with me in my chair. Yes I enjoy it all… could you all feel the sarcasm dripping there?

It’s always been about this person, it will always be about this person and I will never measure up. This person has always known just where to sucker punch me.

I want to cut

I want to cut so bad. The urge is almost unbearable. But I have to wear short sleeves tomorrow in front of my nephews birthday party, then to dinner with my in laws. And then Tuesday I have an MRI on my hip so I can’t carve up my leg… they’d know….

I am just feeling so low today. I don’t even know why.

This too shall pass?

I don’t know if I can do this again… also PTSD triggers.

I will start with the triggers part of this post because it lends itself nicely to the first half of the title. A couple weeks back in DBT group we were asked to write down our triggers, I had a hard time because my triggers are usually internal- my perception that someone is mad at me, answering a question wrong etc.  I couldn’t think of a trigger that someone else could cause.  What I mean to say is I didn’t think there were any topics that were “sensitive”- until today.

I have been locking horns with the special education department in my son’s school over their non-compliance in regards to two specific areas of his IEP.  They are small “things” but they could mean the difference between success and failure for him.  I emailed the director and his case manager a couple weeks ago and voiced my concerns.  The director told the CM to set up an IEP meeting so that we can discuss this. I sorta avoided thinking about it until today.  The meeting date still hasn’t been set, and it was time I started “gathering my evidence”.  As I started this I could feel my chest tightening, my heart beating faster, my thoughts racing and my head aching.  All I could think was I can’t do this again.

When my son was in 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade we lived a couple towns over, where he attended the local public school.  Now, I am not sure if I have mentioned his exact diagnoses – but at the time it was Asperger’s, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and Sensory Processing Disorder.  He has since also added Bipolar II to that list. But we spent 3 years trying to get the school to comply with their own IEPs.  We built a large case against them and brought it to the department of education.  We started with mediation, which failed miserably.  The school couldn’t even live up to their concessions from that.  At that time we went forward with a formal complaint against the school.  We presented about 30 pages detailing 14 allegations against the school.  In the end because I was naive and didn’t eep impeccable records some of the allegations couldn’t be proven but they were found guilty on 7 counts, some of them system wide (meaning affecting all students with IEPs).  They were required to make changes and become compliant or face sanctions.  I don’t know what happened in that district with those specific allegations, because I pulled him out of school and homeschooled him for 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, and the first month of 9th. I couldn’t deal with the constant fighting, the anxiety, and nightmares I was having.  I do have a couple acquaintances that have special needs kiddos in that district and it seems like things haven’t changed at all.  One day last fall at my son’s dojo a couple of the mom’s were talking about the director, the blatant violations and I found myself in the middle of a panic attack just listening to them talk about it.  I forgot about that conversation until today.  We moved during my son’s 7th grade year to a nearby district that had a much better reputation.

As I was writing out my complaints with the school, printing out the emails (I communicate only in written form with the school now – fool me once-). It all came back. And I realized I just don’t know if I can do it again.  I don’t know if I have enough fight left in me. I don’t have the same support person I had back then.  She was amazing, and was an amazing advocate for my son, as well as a support for me.  She was at every meeting, the 5 hour mediation, as well as some other dark times in the early years.

I knew putting the kids back in school I ran the risk of this happening again.  I knew that I may end up with a school who wasn’t complying, even with the simple stuff.  But I had heard good things about this district, the benefits to my own mental health outweighed the POSSIBLE run-ins with the school.  But now, I am left sitting here reduced to the same feelings I had all those years ago, but this time I am not as strong.  I am not as able to let things lie.

I am starting to feel like an animal trapped in a cage, pacing back and forth, eyes narrowed, growling, in that fight or flight mode, panicked and dangerous (though for me it’s emotional danger for myself not that I am going to go full lion on those around me 😉 )

Title…

I don’t know if I ever explained why I used the title I did for my blog.

I come from a community of people who are constantly telling me to smile. And well meaning people who tell me to “think positive”.

So, for the most part I hide my feelings inside.  I pretend everything is ok, even when my arms are cut up, or I have spent the morning crying.  It also refers to my signature move- stuff and avoid.

There is so much junk hiding in me, so many scars, and fresh wounds inside it would probably scare people away…. so those are “the things I hide inside”.

Even now, I have backslid in terms of depression, but I am keeping it hidden inside. No one knows I am constantly on the verge of tears, I am irritable and have a low tolerance for everything….

Homework

Princess Glitter Sparkle, much like PollyAnna assigns homework.  I told her this week that inside her isn’t blood it’s glitter. She’s just -glitter.  There’s no way else to describe it.  She’s glitter in people form.

So she asked me to draw what I want to look like inside- and this was the result..

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Envy.

I get it. I know that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side. I know the grass is greener where you water it. I know all the platitudes.  But for today, I am going to let this emotion define the moment.  Envy is real.  Envy is a negative emotion, I get that.  But I can’t lie and say I don’t have envy in me.

Several people close to me are planning trips to see Mickey Mouse, others building their dream house, others the craft room of their dreams, still other making PRs in 5Ks, Half Marathons or Marathons.  Yes I know people show their highlight real.  Yes, I know that God has a purpose for my life, and I am right where I am supposed to be.  But sometimes you just have to acknowledge that your life sucks right now.  That you don’t have your crap together and you are 40.  That you can’t do the things you want to do.  That you are stuck.  I feel trapped.  I feel like things will never get better.  Like I am on a street and no matter which way I turn, no matter what street I go down, I get no where.

I am preoccupied with the thought that at 40 years old I am no where near where I thought I would be.  And the rest of me is preoccupied with my kids growing up.  We are talking driver’s ed, college, with big one, and little one turns 8 soon.  Eight is a big kid.  It won’t be long before she is tired of toys and dolls.  Everytime I think about the passage of time I am reminded of a line from Star Trek Generations:  “Someone once told me that time is predator that stalks you all your life”.  I agree. I wish there were a way to freeze time now and then.  It would make the unbearable days more bearable.

Im really struggling this week.  I probably should’t have written that all out.  But my heart hurts, physically hurts in my chest. I feel broken.